Saturday, May 28, 2011

GIAC GSE.....the beginning

So it’s been a while since I have blogged, but I have decided to try again. This time though I am going to take the reader on a ride. I have spent considerable time contemplating and I have made the decision to attempt the SANS/GIAC GIAC Security Expert (GSE).

If you are unfamiliar with the GSE it’s SANS Expert level certification check out this link for details, it covers the requirements and the testing process. The certification is a two part process with a written and hands-on practical lab (very much like the Cisco CCIE.) I hold all three required certifications with a gold GSEC paper, Introduction to Malware Analysis. I am using my GCFW to satisfy the second gold paper (or elective). With the minimum requirements meet, I applied for the exam.

This week the application was approved,  and I have come up with this study plan and schedule for the written. I already indexed the three classes (SANS SEC 401, 503, and 504) that the written test covers, so I plan is to review the index and then read the books from each class.

After each class, I am debating if I purchase a set of practice of test for each class to review my strengths and weaknesses. If I don’t purchase I will spend time reviewing areas I feel I need to work on. If I do purchase practice exams I will take one after each “class”, than take a final consisting of all three “classes” at once.

My planned schedule is to review 3 to 4 modules a night during the week and at least 6 each weekend day (total of at least 12 each weekend). At that rate I hope to have the following schedule for each class:

                401 – 5/23 – 5/30
                503 – 5/31 – 6/5
                504 – 6/6 – 6/12

I will then do a final review the week of 6/13 with an eye on testing 6/18. As I write this it has me thinking about the challenge ahead, and to quote Barney Stinson “Challenge Accepted”! I will update the blog as I move towards taking the written. 
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